Life’s a dance you learn as you go…
As I started brainstorming of what to write for this assignment I came to the realization that even though I am in my thirties I am still constantly learning. There are times life can be incredibly rewarding, full of happiness and laughter. Life can at times lack excitement and be considered boring. There are also times that life can bring chaos and tragedy. What I have figured out is that I rely on past experiences to help me process each journey my life takes. I would also say that past experiences have challenged me to become a better person.
As I think back to my successes as a student I would say my third and fourth grade teachers taught me to have self-confidence in who I was. I remember notes of praise they would send home or special privileges they would give for jobs well done. I wanted to please my teachers. I was most likely labeled a “really” good student:). During my 6th grade year of school my parents decided that it was in the our best interest that they home school myself and my two younger siblings… Here is where my confidence as a student hit an all time low. My mother was not a teacher and she lacked the structure and resources to make learning fun. Learning now resulted in arguments and watching videos lessons. As a student I fell further and further behind my peers. (Another downside was I was not able to play sports). I soon became rebellious and would argue with my mom about getting school work done. Learning lost it’s fun and excitement. I soon found I only did the minimal work my mom required so I didn’t lose privileges. Although I understand my parents reasons for wanting to home school, I feel like their decision changed the learner I was. I lost my passion and drive to be an excellent student. I never won the battle to return to public school.. I graduated from homeschooling at the age of 16 and started college. Sometime during my second year at a community college I decide that I was ready for the real world. I stopped going to school and moved 4 hours away from my parents home… When I moved I had intentions of attending the community college there and finishing my associates degree, but I instead I chose to make other things in my life more of a priority.
“Until Death Do Us Part”
There are 6 days that I feel define me as the person I am today. One of those days is the day I said “I do” no longer was life all about me but it was about sharing a life with someone else. It was about us creating our dreams and establishing our beliefs about what life should mean for us. Marriage has taught me a lot about compromise and compassion. I never knew that I could love someone so much. Marriage has also taught me that fairy tales are great for books but, real life can be challenging and confusing. I am proud to say that every time the going has gotten rough for us we have chosen to stick together and support each other through our circumstance. The difficult times have made us better people and I have the utmost respect for my husband. I love that I can be myself with him. He knows all the quirky things that make me, me! He knows my strengths and my struggles. (Much like my 3rd and 4th grade classroom I find confidence in being accepted for who I am).
I always knew I wanted to be a mom. Before I was even a parent, I had some strong ideas about how I would raise my kids. I knew what was right and what was wrong. What I would do and what I wouldn’t do. How my kids would behave and how they wouldn’t behave. I now know just how iggnorant those feeling were. Being a parent is the most complex and complicated experience I have been through. I never realized how much four little lives would consume my thoughts and emotions. My husband describes me as a “Mother Bear” or a “Helicopter mom” at times. I literally would do anything to make sure my children are well loved and cared for. I often think back to the feelings I had as a child growing up, with three siblings there were times I felt like just a number. I was very different from my siblings and I often I felt misunderstood, forgotten and lonely at times growing up. I wish that I would have been recognized for the individual I am and not pushed to be something I was not. My personal philosphy as a mom is that I parent each of my kids differently. (All four of my children are so different from each other). I feel it is important that my husband and I get to know them for who they are and support them in their strenghts and weaknesses. There are times as a mom that I feel my children are my vulnerable self. When they do something for the first time I re-remember doing similar things as a child. Thinking this way has helped me stay connected to the fact that I need to give my children life experiences, teach them to celebrate the joys, embrass the laughter, live in the moment and give them strategies and examples to make it through the hard times. Each day I feel the responsibilty of preparing my kids for lifes journey
The unexpected Parts of life….
There have been many times in my adult life that I have been broken by tragedy or the unexpected. I feel that there are things I will never understand and it is hard to accept that there is really no answer for why some things happen. Overcoming grief is a very difficult thing and honestly I am not sure how to overcome it yet. I have a new emotional vocabulary to describe my feelings:Grief,sorrow,depression,misery,gloom,wretchedness,despair,hopelessness,anguish,wounded,etc. I still don’t know what to do with these emotions when they surface, they are heart breaking, painful and tragic.What I have learned from these experiances in to be appreciative of time and to give my best everyday. It is a struggle to move on and I keep telling myself that I am the example to my kids of how to cope during the hard parts. For me the unexpected parts of life make me feel nervous and afraid, but also appreciative of another day with the ones I love and care about.
Being ok, Being Me…
It has taken me alot of my adult life to figure out that it is ok for me to be me and to be content with all that I have. I am extremally happy with my family, my job and the realtionships I have with extended family and friends. I see the value in not trying to keep up with the “Jone’s” but creating my own definition of what makes me happy. I have am beyond blessed to have a job that makes me bubble over with happiness. I love the challenges and rewards of working with preshoolers. My happy place is being in my classroom interacting with children. Having a job I love keeps me motivated to give my best each day to the little lives I interact with. I also found that the there is more value in the quality of friends I have rather then the quanity. Life is busy with four growing kids, a husband, job, animals,. to take care of, etc.. I love that I have friendships that are not high maintenced. We understand each other and are able to connect when it works, but no matter how much time we spend apart it does not negatively effect our frienship. I will end with a quote “You’ll never be brave if you don’t get hurt. You’ll never learn if you don’t make mistakes. You’ll never be successful if you don’t encounter failure.”